The CAs, CGAs, CMAs are now merging, what does that mean for you?

 In APBS Blog

You may have noticed a great deal more advertising for the CPA designation. You might be wondering what exactly it’s about and what it means for you. The Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) is the new accounting designation that is going to replace the three different accounting designations, Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CA), Certified General Accountants Association of Canada (CGA), and Certified Management Accountants of Canada (CMA), existed before. The three designations agreed to work toward a unified designation from 2011 and on Oct 1st, 2014 the final step has taken place and the three designations were officially merged.

Theoretically there are many benefits to this merger such as:

  • A unified Canadian CPA would offer a unique combination of expertise including accounting and finance, auditing, strategy, and leadership.
  • Common set of high ethical and practice standards would be more efficient and effective.
  • A fully merged Canadian profession would reduce confusion for you as a business owner looking for a qualified accountant.
  • A merged profession means it will be easier for accountants to serve international or inter-provincial business needs

The previous CAs, CMAs, and CGAs will get a CPA in addition to their previous designation until November 2022. For example, former CGAs will now have a designation CPA, CGA. After that, the older designations will disappear. All accounting students today will receive a CPA designation from now on.

At the end of the day, as a small business owner what matters to you is to find a skillful accountant that you can trust to do your accounting and helps you in growing your business. Whether your accountant is formerly a CPA, CMA, or CGA, does not necessarily have bearing on their personal level of expertise and reliability. Each will have their own areas of expertise and specialization which you’ll need to assess for yourself.

Your choice will depend on your budget but also on their ability. This merger won’t change all accountants right away but through standard education and standards, in time it will. If you have further questions about the new CPA designation, please do not hesitate to contact your accountant or talk to us today at 416-495-1098 or

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